Spells as Prayers
This is a topic that I have been thinking about for a while. There are lots of things within Pagan practice that have a correlation to practices within other religions, most notably (since this is my own personal culture), Christianity. I was thinking about what spellwork would correlate to, and the closest thing I can come up with is ‘prayer’.
When people from other religions pray, they’re essentially doing the same things that I, as a Pagan, am doing – asking deity to intercede, bless or otherwise act (or refrain from acting); or asking for a change in the way things are going.
Spellwork is much the same way, but in my practice, spellwork doesn’t take the place of praying; it’s an addition to.
Prayer, for me, is the communing between myself and deity/spirit/deep meditation – however you want to phrase that. I can’t put a label on it because prayer to me is many different things – my definition of what prayer is changes according to my need or desire at the time. Sometimes, prayer is meditation, sometimes it’s expressing thanks and gratitude, sometimes it is intense study, sometimes it’s working in my art journal – it is many things all at the same time. Sometimes it’s just sitting at my altar and contemplating my spirituality.
Spellwork, on the other hand, is pretty specific – it’s putting an idea, a change, my will, out into the Universe with the expectation that it will affect the change I intend. Spells involve a form of prayer; they are a form of prayer, but they are not the only kind of praying that I do.
As I understand it, prayers in other religions encompass many of the same things. The specific religion I was raised in made prayer a more formal thing. It was the medium through which one contacted deity – the only medium through which one could access deity. That made the Divine seem so far away – so inaccessible; so impersonal. I much prefer the more intimate and personal relationships that I have with my chosen deities.
This more broad view of what prayer is, can and should be is something that I have encouraged with my children. I want them to have a more personal connection to the Divine, and I want their practice to be indicative of their own needs, not merely a reflection of mine. Ultimately, I want them to come up with their own ideas about what prayer is and can be. At this point, they don’t practice spellwork, but they’re young, yet. If they choose to incorporate spellwork into their own prayer style, or not, then it will be up to them!
This post is part of the Pagan Blog Project. To read more with the ‘S’ topic, originally for the
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